Often overshadowed by Las Vegas, the city of Reno is another great gambling destination in the state of Nevada. Known as “The Biggest Little City in the World,” Reno is home to numerous casinos and was the original home of Harrah’s Entertainment.
Like many towns in the western region of the United States, Reno was originally associated with the mining industry. In the 1850s, miners found gold – and later large deposits of silver – in the nearby town of Virginia City, making it a popular spot for prospectors looking to make their fortune. Reno grew around a toll bridge that spanned the Truckee River, allowing access to Virginia City from the California Trail.
In the 1930s, Reno gained a new reputation as the place to go if you wanted to get an easy divorce, thanks to divorce laws in the state of Nevada that were very liberal by the standards of the era. At nearly the same time, legalized gambling also came to Reno. For the next 20 years, Reno would become the gambling capital of the United States. However, by the late 1950s, it would be surpassed by Las Vegas. In more recent years, the growth of Indian casinos has also put a dent into Reno’s share of the gambling market.
However, despite the hit to the gambling industry, Reno has still remained a very popular destination for tourists and gamblers alike. Many large hotel-casinos still operate successfully in the city, and Reno is also known for its many special events throughout the year. In addition, many older casinos that no longer operate have been turned into condominiums, helping to revitalize the downtown area. Nearby Lake Tahoe makes Reno an attractive destination even for those who aren’t interested in gambling.
Popular Blackjack Casinos in Reno
The Atlantis Casino Resort has one of the largest gaming areas in Reno, and has been servicing gamblers since 1972. However, it has undergone many renovations over the years, particularly in the 1990s, when the hotel was greatly expanded to add over 1,000 new rooms. Until 1999, the hotel and casino were known as the Clarion.
Recently, Atlantis has added a new expansion, which includes a modernized race and sportsbook, a new restaurant, and additions to the casino. In the coming years, the casino floor will be remodeled to give the entire resort a more modern theme.
The Peppermill was opened in 1971, but it wasn’t always a major player on the Reno gambling scene. At first, it was a modest coffeeshop and lounge. It wasn’t until 1979 that margers created Peppermill Resorts, a group that now owns several hotel and casino properties in a number of Nevada cities. A small casino was first added to the Peppermill in 1981, and it has become progressively larger ever since. Expansions have allowed the Peppermill to add a large hotel, restaurants, and extensive floor space for the resort’s casino, which now features over 80,000 square feet of gambling.
One of the coolest renovations occurred in 2009, when the Peppermill broke ground on a project to heat the entire resort with geothermal energy derived from a reservoir of hot water that exists under the property.
Grand Sierra Resort
With over 2,000 hotel rooms and 80,000 square feet of gambling space, the Grand Sierra Resort and Casino is Reno’s premiere luxury destination and the largest hotel in Northern Nevada. The resort was originally conceived as a spin-off of the MGM Grand, but has since taken on its own unique identity.
Beyond the typical gambling options, the Grand Sierra Resort also features a number of additional attractions. The resort features 10 different restaurants, a 50-lane bowling alley, a shopping center, and even a laser tag arena.